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Re: [psynth-devel] On the future of the Psychosynth UI, opinions needed

From: Juan Pedro Bolivar Puente
Subject: Re: [psynth-devel] On the future of the Psychosynth UI, opinions needed
Date: Thu, 23 Sep 2010 17:03:52 +0200
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On 22/09/10 23:32, lucas wrote:
> what about PyMT and openframeworks/Cinder stuff ?

OpenFrameworks/Cinder do not seem very appropiate for Psychosynth, but
PyMT looks really good. I had already heard about and thought that it
was related only to "input", but seeing that it supports full UI with
touchable widgets and stuff... it is something to look at.

> OSC support could be cool

There is already OSC support. It needs some cleanup though, but OSC is
one of the basic features of the project :D

Thanks a lot,


> On 21 September 2010 23:54, Juan Pedro Bolivar Puente <
> address@hidden> wrote:
> Hello,
> As some of you know, in a few months heavy activity in this project is
> to be expected because it is going to be the topic of my Master Thesis
> project.
> The whole core of the project is going to be almost rewritten in order
> to add the following functionality:
> - A new basic sound proccessing library inspired by Boost.GIL image
> processing library.
> - Midi and sequencing support.
> - Plugin and LADSPA support.
> - Polyphony.
> - Hierarchical patches.
> - Saving/Loading patches.
> This will for sure heavily influence the high level API that interfaces
> with the 3D UI so most of the UI code will be affected too. Therefore,
> the UI will be almost for sure rewritten too.
> The current UI, as Alexander knows well, has several problems. The worst
> of all is called CEGUI, a bad widget library filled with bugs that
> hinders usability. Also, CEGUI releases are heterogenous and create a
> maintenance hell for packages. Also, Ogre, even though it is a great
> scenegraph library for games, it causes maintenance problems and is
> often too heavy for the lightweight usage that we are doing. Alexander
> suggested kicking 3D out of the project and, after thinking a lot about
> it and asking a lot of people, I have come up to the following decision:
> *The next Psychosynth UI is not going to be 3D*
> This opens a new widest range of possibilities and allows us to
> concentrate on the original goals: to provide a innovative and
> collaborative (i.e. touchable?) interface.
> However, there are big constraints for the new toolkits to be used. One
> of them is time. In around 9 months or even less I will have to
> implement all the previously described changes and the new UI. That is a
> big challenge, therefore, rapid development is one of the biggest needs.
> Next, multitouch is probably the only way we can really provide a usable
> experience for Psychosynth, therefore a library that either already
> implements multitouch or is easy to adapt for so is good. While
> GNU/Linux is the main target, cross-platform support is probably the
> only way to attract the majority of musicians who use crappy operating
> systems and enlighten them with the great powers of Software Freedom :D
> I, therefore, encourage anyone following the development to propose
> their ideas and thoughs on which toolkits and designs of the new
> interface. On the toolkits discussion, I make the following proposals
> for debate:
> - LibNui:
> This library looks very pretty and audio applications already use it. It
> is written in C++ and works well on IPhone, etc. Sadly, while it claims
> to work properly on GNU/Linux, even the examples included in the source
> distribution work very badly on my Debian installation. Moreover, it is
> not distributed with biggest distributions.
> - Clutter:
> This looks really promising. It support multi-touch already on
> GNU/Linux, but I suspect that it does not on other platforms. It is
> written in C, which is a very unproductive language, but have both C++
> and Python bindings. While C++ bindings seem to be barely maintained,
> the Python bindings are a bit better and I am strongly considering
> writing Python bindings for the 'libpsynth' and writting the whole UI in
> Python, which is a language that I really enjoy.
> But it has some drawbacks. The most important is that, "MX", the only
> reasonable widget toolkit that I have found for it, does not have any
> language binding --it is in C only. Therefore we may have to write some
> widgets for it.
> We can use it inside GTK, which might be a solution for some parts of
> the UI, we would like to avoid GTK as much as possible to provide a more
> interactive experience. Another solution would be to use GTK /inside/
> the Clutter scenegraph, as I have seen in some examples, but support for
> that seems experimental and not supported by the bindings.
> I think that Alexander works near to people related to GTK mulitouch and
> Clutter so it would be very good if you could provide more insight on
> the suitability of this and other libraries.
> Thanks a lot for reading this and I look forward to hear everybody's
> comments :-)
> JP

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